It's just a regular day. I'm walking back from the bathroom to science. There's a lot of people in the halls, so I walk quickly.
Kim emerges from the people. I smile, but before I can greet her, she says, "Are you okay?"
I frown, confused. "Yeah, what's wrong?"
"I thought you were getting away from the classroom."
"Basil found out."
I stare at her, shocked. Impossible he can't know impossible no no no no NO my life is ruined this can't be happening! He knows. He knows I like him.
And now I can't flee into the halls. I've used up my bathroom trip for the class. I can't disappear into a stall and sob, and scream.
We walk back together. I am sure my face is white.
I sit down silently, staring ahead. I force myself not to look at him. Kim slips by and leaves a note, reading Are you okay? I look over at her and try to nod. She comes over and asks it again. I say yeah.
Bloom asks the same thing, and I snap at him. It's only nerves. He was just being nice. Then Benny says, "Yeah, you look...not good."
Of course I don't. My biggest secret is out. The world is crashing around me.
Next class: French. I sit right next to him. He is depressed, because he likes Paula. I'm lucky Silver is there, because Gordan is the other person, and she's on his end of the spectrum. I end up snapping at her, and he says "Geez, Strawberry, chill..."
Chill. As if.
I thought I heard someone call my name, but it was probably nothing. I keep walking. My friends are nowhere in sight.
A tap on my shoulder. I turn around and come face-to-face with Basil.
Instantly, my heart goes through the roof. I can barely see, barely hear. He gestures for my to follow him and leads me over to the side of the breezeway, and starts talking. I can't hear him, but I catch 'Hallie made me...'. Then he mumbles something that sounds very much like "Will you get out with me?"
I can't think. "What?"
"Will you go out with me?"
Before I can think, my mouth says "No". I blurt it out, with an angry force I didn't realize I had around him. I don't remember his expression. Nothing else mattered. I needed to get out, because I could feel the breakdown coming...the hsyterics, the tears that never fall, the heart trying to force itself out of my chest. Kyle, Genne, and Gabby are there, they support me...I walk as fast as I can away, trying not to hear Genne and Gabby go on about what a jerk he is...I attach myself to the wall outside the girl's entrance to the gymnasium, surrounded by my friends, afraid to speak yet because he hasn't passed. I can hardly breathe. Once we're inside, everything's spilled...
It was April Fool's day.
Partners in French. I'm with Silver, of course, and Basil has managed to partner with Dan. Silver has a bracelet.
Dan asks to see it.
Silver says no.
Dan, jokingly, calls Silver "selfish".
Basil says "Yeah, and all her friends are too."
I turn towards him, confused and angry. For the first time, I meet his eyes.
They are ablaze.
I hold his gaze for a few seconds before the hate etched in his face is too much. I turn away.
And try not to cry for the rest of class.